“Girls Go Cyberstart” Competition Opens Up the World of Cybersecurity to Cheyenne Girls


By Ana V. & Tessa V., Staff Writers

For the second year, Cheyenne students participated in the annual Girls Go Cyberstart competition which invited girls from all over the world to take part in cybersecurity-related challenges.


Due to the shortage of girls in cybersecurity jobs, the Girls Go Cyberstart competition was created to spark interest or give girls more exposure to the cyber industry. Cybersecurity includes learning about the security of any device that is internet-based, such as phones, computers, and smart watches.


Isabella S., a participant in the competition, stated, “I think it’s important for more girls to learn about cybersecurity, so we can stay safe on the internet. There are a lot of jobs that require the internet now, so it makes sense to prepare for that.”


During the first round of competition, over 170 Cheyenne girls advanced by competing in challenges that involved decrypting cryptography, creating safe passwords, and providing protection in an online environment. The competition is split into different rounds based on the level of points participants earn by completing the puzzles and challenges.


Dierra J., one of the girls who moved on to the second round of the competition, explained the challenges. “To me, it all has to do with common sense. When you do a level, it gives you a brief description, and it helped me advance because I applied the description to the task.”


Alex B., another girl who advanced to the next round of competition, expressed her feelings. “I wasn’t expecting to move on to the next round. So, when I found out, I couldn’t wait to do more challenges. I’m looking forward to it.”


The competition not only offers insight into what it’s like to have a job in cybersecurity; there are also many academic benefits to those students who join.


Cheyenne cybersecurity teacher and competition advisor, Mrs. Bromley-Norwood, explained how participating in the Girls Go Cyberstart benefits girls. “There are scholarships, cash prizes, free trips, and things that will allow students to participate in different conferences and activities that will give them more knowledge about cybersecurity.”


Registration for Girls Go CyberStart has closed, but interested students can register for next year at https://www.girlsgocyberstart.org/interest


Cheyenne High School offers several options for students (male or female) to become involved in cybersecurity, such as enrolling in Cybersecurity or Computer Science classes or joining the Skills Tech Club which meets every Thursday after school in room 501.